Governor Scott Walker plans to borrow money, $500 million to help pay for a billion dollar budget gap in transportation following an audit that found projects way over budget.
The Governor said today that a gas tax is off the table and there is enough money to keep current projects going while still giving money to counties to fix our crumbling infrastructure.
“There is more money for state highway rehabilitation than has been funded before,” said Walker. “Local governments are seeing more money for local roads and bridge aid than they have seen in fifteen to twenty years.”
However, other legislators have been critical of the Governor’s plan and it is not just Democrats, several Republicans spoke out that the state needs to look at long term solutions.
Those long term solutions could include ideas like a gas tax, or toll roads or registration fee increases, but the Governor disagrees.
“No for me with the reform dividend as big as it is I think we should be more than able to cover our priorities,” said Walker. “We are not pouring major dollars into projects in Milwaukee.”
That money will be divided through out the state and a member of WISPIRG was thankful to the Governor for this citing more money needs to go to public transit, bike lanes and pedestrian walk ways then huge highway projects.
“We clearly have to apply greater scrutiny to projects that we green light and we hope the Governor invests in our existing crumbling infrastructure,” said Ethan Jacquart of WISPRG.
This comes after an audit showed that Wisconsin Department of Transportation came in $3.1 billion dollars over budget on sixteen projects through out the state.
That has put legislators in a tough position and several spoke out about getting more information before moving forward with the Governor’s plan.